JavaScript Game Development: Trends, Pros, and Cons

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Blog / JavaScript Game Development: Trends, Pros, and Cons

The game industry is a rapidly growing and lucrative sector encompassing a wide range of games, from large-scale AAA games to small indie titles, mobile gaming projects, and browser games. It is a billion-dollar industry that evolved from simple arcade games to complex and immersive experiences where billions of players worldwide spend endless hours during sleepless nights.

Despite the widespread popularity of video gaming, few people think about how intricately this industry works. Visual game design, writing code itself, audio engineering, marketing, and a lot of details are what any game looks like from the inner perspective. Modern game development includes different technologies and programming languages; however, is the most popular programming language in the world, JavaScript, a good choice for game development? 

Most of the impressive games available in the market today, such as EA’s Fifa, League of Legends, and Assassin’s Creeds, use special game engines such as Unreal Engine. Most of them are based on C, C++, or C#, according to Medium. However, there are some exceptions. For instance, Minecraft, often considered the most popular game ever, was built on Java, while some games, such as Sims 4, Sid Meier’s Civilization IV, or Battlefield 2, use Python as a dominant programming language. 

Although JavaScript development services involve a wide range of applications, you will probably not meet JavaScript as a principal programming language among massive gaming projects, especially when it comes to action games or sports simulators. However, JavaScript has its own particular niche in game development, and let’s check together when game development with JavaScript is a reasonable decision.

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Introducing JavaScript game development

First of all, let’s try to define the scope of JavaScript-based game development. Of course, you can create almost anything using any programming language, but there is a caveat. You can reinvent the wheel, but what for? In most cases, JavaScript is a bad idea for creating desktop games; in case you want to develop a desktop-only game, you may need to consider choosing other programming languages or game engines. However, there are several situations when JS is actually a valid game development tool.

What is JavaScript game development?

Using JavaScript for game development is all about web-based and mobile games. In such a case, game development in JavaScript has certain advantages over other programming languages. As a popular game creation language in its niche, JS naturally works well with CSS as well as HTML and is an excellent match for developing browser games. 

In the case of mobile applications, JavaScript has become increasingly popular due to powerful tools for creating cross-platform mobile games. React Native and Ionic, the most popular JavaScript frameworks, are good choices for building games since they use a single codebase for both iOS and Android, making the development and maintenance of cross-platform games more accessible and efficient.

Pros and cons of JavaScript game development

Like any programming language, JS game development has both advantages and disadvantages. You should consider some of the main indicators, including accessibility, performance, scalability, and limitations, to make an informed decision about whether JavaScript is suitable for developing your dream game.

JavaScript for game development pros:

  • Developers can implement JavaScript for your web game’s both front and back ends. Accessibility in such a case is a tremendous advantage for developing browser-based games, as JS can be easily integrated with HTML and CSS. Users can play these games directly in major browsers without any additional software downloads.
  • In terms of flexibility, it should be said that JS can be used in combination with other programming languages and game engines, such as Unity3D.
  • JS can be a perfect choice for beginners in coding who want to build their simple projects without turning the game development journey into a struggle. Needless to say, JavaScript is easier to learn than C-like languages.
  • JS-based games run on various devices that work with web browsers. They don’t need any additional software. For instance, Java Runtime Environment is required to be installed before playing Java-based Minecraft.
  • It’s definitely a good choice for creating a cross-platform mobile game.
  • JavaScript game development may offer a wide variety of libraries, advanced tools, and the support of an extensive community.
  • The product can be easily ported to Windows Universal App (the Windows app store for desktop and mobile devices).

JavaScript for game dev cons:

  • JS has certain performance limitations. While JavaScript’s performance has slightly improved recently, it is still quite modest compared to C-like languages. 
  • JS offers limited graphics capabilities. You can still create visually appealing projects; however, creating games with advanced 3D graphics may be challenging.
  • Programming the saving options for users can be a bit complex, even for skilled developers, due to the architecture of JS.
  • Security concerns are serious for JS-based games. They may be vulnerable to cross-site scripting (XSS) attacks and code injection.
  • Lack of standardization of language itself can lead to compatibility issues between different web browsers.
What can JavaScript be used for in game development?

Games running on JavaScript 

The real boom of using JS for game development happened after the end of the Flash Player era. Many developers have adopted this technology for browser-based game creation. It demonstrates how game developers can use JS and HTML5 to represent visuals just on the web.

Here’s the outline of the most popular online games built with JavaScript.


2048 JS Game is a variation of the famous Play Store’s 1024 game. It is a one-player online riddle game developed by Italian web designer Gabriele Cirulli, using JavaScript, CSS3, and HTML5. Since it is a game with the MIT License, you can use the basic features of the game and add whatever you want. 

Pseudo 3D Racer

The game is developed using HTML5 language and JavaScript and is more suitable for modern web browsers. There are four versions of the game evolution, and you can quickly check its progress step by step through the GitHub repository.

Dinosaur Game

It is the game most Google Chrome users play when experiencing troubles with their Internet connection. Here is another beautiful example of how to make a game with JavaScript only.

Tower Building

It has unique colors and designs and uses the latest HTML5 as well as updated ES6. You can download its source code for free on GitHub.


It is an arcade game available in three modes depending on the number of players: single-player, multiplayer, or network game. It is a type of game with Mortal Kombat and Tekken concepts with JS, HTML, and CSS logic.

Clumsy Bird

Clumsy Bird is a lightweight open-source copy of the famous Floppy Bird built on HTMl5 and Melon.js. It perfectly illustrates how developers can use HTML5 and JavaScript for game development.   


The game can boast a great UI and visual depiction. It is an open-source racing game made in a futuristic visual style.

Frameworks for JavaScript games development 

Frameworks for JavaScript game development

Besides JS, JavaScript developers utilize various libraries and frameworks for game app development depending on their knowledge and experience. 


It is one of the most popular JavaScript 3D libraries and a cross-browser API for displaying animated 3D computer graphics objects in a web browser. Its simple set of functions enables you to execute common operations for a 3D scene.


The performant and straightforward library offers more abstraction than ThreeJS and provides even more pre-built tools to manage your 3D visuals.


It is a comprehensive set of tools for web and mobile game creation. Despite the severe performance issues of its previous version, Phaser2 and Phaser3 have fixed most of them. Right now, they are one of the most performant web game frameworks available. Besides, its large community and availability of tutorials make it easy for newbies to make their first steps in game creation. 


The rendering library enables efficient 2D object interactions. It is a popular library explicitly tailored for that purpose and is the fastest WebGL 2D renderer available.  


It used to be the first performant framework. Now, it is an open-source framework with a good level editor, but not as widely utilized as before, as it’s not the most simple or documented, yet well tested and extendable.  


The virtual reality web platform is also built with JS. JavaScript API enables the use of virtual reality in web applications. This technology, which is familiar nowadays, is used in games. The WebVR API captures information on VR Devices connected to a computer, and it catches headset position, orientation, velocity, and acceleration data. This JavaScript API converts this information into valuable data that online games can leverage in online games.

Trends in JavaScript game development

As the game industry continues to evolve, new game development JavaScript trends are emerging. Some of the latest trends that shape the future of the game dev include the following:

Migration to cloud

Most HTML5 and JS-based games continue their migration to the cloud. By moving game servers to the cloud, developers can reduce hardware resource costs and ensure seamless user access and more reliable data safety.

Social gaming

Social gaming is a common game development tendency to foster social interaction and collaboration among players. One example we can provide based on the widespread JS gaming tutorial is the growing popularity of card games, Mafia-like games, and Among Us successors.

Implementation of trendy technologies in JS game dev

Blockchain, DevOps, and AI allow game developers to improve monetization and provide better analytics and a more complex experience.

Multiplayer games

Multiplayer games have become more prevalent, with real-time communication technologies such as WebRTC and WebSockets enabling real-time multiplayer gameplay.

How to make a JavaScript game 

Creating a JavaScript game requires careful planning, a solid understanding of programming concepts, and familiarity with game development frameworks and tools. You can find multiple online tutorials for making a copy of some of the existing game concepts; however, creating advanced games from scratch requires deep knowledge and thorough planning. A simple understanding of how to code a game in JavaScript will certainly not be enough. Let’s try to figure out what the entire process consists of:


Start by defining the concept, gameplay mechanics, objectives, and other game ideas. Write a rough draft of how theoretically it should work.

Choose the engine and framework, also set up the development environment

Select an engine considering your specific requirements. Phaser, Babylon.js, or Three.js can be a perfect choice for the first experience, and after that, install the necessary tools, including a text editor or integrated development environment (IDE).

Develop assets, logic, and features of the game

Design game assets, such as graphics, sound effects, and music, and write a code base for the game content, for instance, movement, scoring, etc.

Test and debug the game

Provide thorough game testing, ensuring its correct functioning and debugging any potential issues. Right after that, optimize your game performance and polish the final product.

JS game development process

Planning a gaming project requires time and effort to find the right talent to do so during a limited time and budget. If you want to hire a dedicated team for JS Game Development, contact ELITEX. We will help your product to succeed by finding the right people. 

How to deal with security issues when using JavaScript for game development

It’s important to remember that security issues are a big deal for game development using JS. Inherently, browsers have worse protection compared to specific game engines. So, here are a few simple measures to prevent potential vulnerabilities and security issues. Some of them are standard security practices for the development of any kind of software, while some of them are specific to game development:

  • Be aware of cross-site scripting (XSS), SQL injection, and clickjacking. Use security headers such as Content Security Policy (CSP) and X-XSS-Protection to prevent them. CSP can help limit loaded resources, while X-XSS-Protection can enable browsers to detect and block malicious scripts.
  • Implement authentication and authorization. Only authorized users should have access to the game data.
  • Validate user input to prevent injection attacks, data manipulations, and other exploits.
  • Use HTTPS to encrypt all communications between the client and server. It can help to prevent man-in-the-middle attacks.
  • Protect sensitive data such as user passwords, payment information, and game scores to prevent fraudulent actions.
  • Keep software, game engine, and libraries up-to-date as new updates allow to avoid arising issues.
  • Monitor and log security events and unusual behavior, and log these events for analysis and reporting.

These simple steps will help you stay vigilant about security issues, and by following them, you can protect both the game and the users who play it.

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FAQ about JavaScript Game Development

What is JavaScript game development?

It is the process of creating video games using the JavaScript programming language, additional game engines, frameworks, and libraries of JS.

When is JavaScript good for game development?

JavaScript is suitable for developing simple 2D games that can be played in a web browser. Mobile gaming can also be created using JS tools.

How to make a JavaScript game from scratch?

You’ll need to understand JS programming concepts on a decent level before starting your own game. Also, you need to understand game design principles and some knowledge of graphics and audio.

Is it possible to create an AAA game with JavaScript?

Well, technically, it’s possible to create AAA games with JavaScript. Nevertheless, it would require significant effort and may not be the most practical option. That’s why you will hardly find well-known titles built exclusively with JS.

What are popular game engines built with JavaScript?

Some of the most popular game engines based on JS include Phaser, Pixi.js, Three.js, and Babylon.js.

How can I incorporate sound and music into my JavaScript game?

Use HTML5 audio tags of JS libraries like Howler.js or Tone.js to incorporate sound effects into your JS game.

What are some strategies for monetizing JavaScript games?

The most popular way to monetize browser games is by displaying advertisements within the game or on the game’s website. However, you can also use selling game licenses, offering in-game purchases, as well as a subscription strategy.

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